Archipelago

 

Archipelago

Zone 1

Katerina Cosgrove, Bronwen Dugan, Eva Frengstad

Archipelago responds to the notion of ‘Islands’ and the paradoxical qualities of resilience and fragility, entrapment and survival. The work draws upon ancestral and traditional modes of island life, with the rhythms of the sea and the tides of emotion it brings at the forefront.

These same qualities are inherent in us as artists – and as women, mothers, granddaughters and daughters of other lands. We are intimate with the feeling-states of dislocation, displacement straddling two worlds, suspended on the cusp between one realm and another. Each of us are in-between, belonging everywhere and nowhere - like scattered islands - using our liminal status to enrich our combined creative practices.

Throughout the work, we are tight-roping across extremes, between the ‘islands’ of calm under the gums; extremes that will resolve beneath the canopy of net-like forms, and up into the oceanic quality of the sky. Evocative of fishing nets, Archipelago embodies both a textural delicacy and toughness, while responding to time and space, mindful that the site is ever-changing, with the sun and wind interacting with the work in unexpected ways.

Archipelago resounds with the lyrical voices of the three artists, binding the work in an evocation of a fluid realm, while also binding them. We unite in rhythm and sing our own song, Archipelago, a poetic ballad reminiscent of a Sami folk song - a ‘yoik’ - that has no beginning nor end, like the wind.

Archipelago symbolises the artistic energy evolving from the unique collaboration between Eva Frengstad, Bronwen Dugan, and Katerina Cosgrove. Through finding a nexus, an original work was created above and beyond that which could be produced individually, and distinct from the artists’ previous work. In essence, magic happened!

The process of ‘un-weaving’ the hessian and dipping the altered cloth in dye, echoes that of traditional fishermen and women, weaving their nets and hauling in their catch for their survival.

 

 Katerina, Eva and Bronwen have produced at traditional Yoik (song) which is performed as part of their installation. The words are below.

Archipelago Song

 ‘At the end of my life, with just one breath, 
if you come, I’ll sit up and si-i-ing.’ 
Rumi

 

First verse:

The boats we could have taken once

are gone.

We’ll not go to another sea, 

another place.

Never to leave this island.

On this shore we were born

and we will die. 

Chorus:

Three islands, archipelago

Trio of souls, one voice.

Second verse:

At dusk we watch

the departing boats, the sun’s tender fingers

drown the horizon.

We wake at dawn with a memory:

If you come, I’ll sit up and sing.

The echo

of another life; another’s name.

(DRUM)

Chorus:

Three islands, archipelago

Trio of souls, one voice.

Third verse:

In midday blaze, or midnight hush,

when fishing-boats lay on the strand

like loved ones, or a souvenir.

We pauselook at one another…

Chorus:

Three islands, archipelago

Trio of souls, one voice.

 

 

 

We would like to acknowledge the following people who have assisted in the realisation of this work.

Dave ­ Eco Divers (for supplying ropes)
Steve ­ Benedict Sand & Gravel (for donating recycled glass sand)
Jason ­ Mona Vale Music (for his support and encouragement)
Bill Snape for his amazing throwing skills and patience